This week in birds - #373

A roundup of the week's news of birds and the environment:



A King Rail searches for a snack in the wetlands of Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge.

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The National Park Service is one year into its effort to re-establish wolves on Isle Royale in Michigan. But there is a problem. Of the nineteen wolves that they have relocated to the island habitat, three have died of unknown causes. Another wolf walked across an ice bridge to the mainland in January. The NPS is trying to solve the mystery of the deaths and, in the meantime, has made some adjustments to its reintroduction procedures to try to reduce stress to the animals.  

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Climate change is a threat to some of the oldest living entities on the planet - the giant sequoias. The not-for-profit conservation group Save the Redwoods has plans to buy the largest privately owned sequoia grove in order to try to protect and save it.

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A new study confirms that North American bird species are attempting to adjust to climate change by shifting their ranges farther north. This could result in at least eight states losing their "state bird" as those birds move out of their areas. 

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When the land-dwelling ancestors of whales and dolphins moved into the seas, they shed some of the genes of traits that were no longer useful to them in their aquatic life.

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Margaret Renkl discusses the fall hummingbird migration.

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Birders are already seeing hints of the climate change-caused range shifting by the birds that is discussed in the recent Audubon report.

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The endangered Cerulean Warbler has lost 70% of its population over the last 44 years, but now the decline of the species has slowed and the bird seems to be making something of a recovery. It's not entirely clear why but there are several theories.

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A previously unknown species of a tiny primate called a tarsier was first discovered on the Togean Islands off Sulawesi, Indonesia, in 1993. It has taken until now for scientists to study the species sufficiently to describe it to science. 

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One of the leading causes of extinction for many species is the global wildlife trade.

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Saltwater is killing forests along the East Coast, sometimes even far distant from the sea. This leads to stands of dead trees, often bleached or blackened, known as ghost forests.

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A study found that Greater Prairie-Chickens were less bothered by the sound of wind turbines than they were by inadequate ground cover when it came to choosing their territory.

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Snakehead fish are an invasive species that is indigenous to Asia, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Africa. They can breathe on land and crawl like a snake. Recently two were caught in Gwinnett County, Georgia. The blunt directive of the wildlife officials there was "Kill it! Don't let it escape."

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More than half a century after being designated an endangered species, the tiny Kirtland's Warbler has recovered sufficiently to be removed from the endangered list. It will still require careful monitoring to ensure that it doesn't slip back into danger.

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The Atlantic Puffin colony on Eastern Egg Rock Island in Maine had a record 188 breeding pairs this summer. But the colony's future is uncertain as climate change and the warming ocean affect the fish that they prefer as food.

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The kangaroos and other herbivores of Australia are the cause of overgrazing on some of the country's national parks and preserves.

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A Least Bittern recently turned up in, of all places, Ireland. Unfortunately, the bird was in poor condition and it expired not too long after it was discovered. Even so, it was the first record of this species in Ireland.

Comments

  1. Great shot of the King Rail, a bird I have only ever seen once. As always, thanks for the weekly roundup of environmental and nature news.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A compliment from the master photographer himself is much appreciated!

      Delete
  2. I am still on my morning coffee, but I detected a juxtaposition in your news today between the endangered and the invasive.

    ReplyDelete

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